CENTRAL Coast Mariners’ attention shifts from Hyundai A-League action to its 2013 AFC Champions League campaign for the first half of this week, with Graham Arnold’s men travelling to Japan to take on 2011 J-League winners Kashiwa Reysol.
Brazilian striker Cleo, pictured above, will be one to watch when Kashiwa Reysol host Central Coast Mariners in 2013 AFC Champions League Matchday 2 at the Hitachi Soccer Stadium in Japan.
Central Coast Mariners- attention turns from Hyundai A-League action to its 2013 AFC Champions League campaign for the first half of this week, with Graham Arnold-s men travelling to Japan to take on 2011 J-League winners Kashiwa Reysol.
The Mariners leave for Kashiwa via Tokyo on Monday morning and will hold their only training session in the land of the rising sun ahead of their Matchday 2 meeting with Nelsinho Baptista-s team on Tuesday afternoon.
The game at the Hitachi Soccer Stadium pits two sides that lost in their respective domestic competitions in the last round of action against one another.
Indeed, on Saturday Kashiwa Reysol fell 3-0 away to FC Tokyo at Ajinomoto Stadium in Chofu in just their second match of the 2013 J-League campaign. Reysol won their first match of the season at home to Kawasaki Frontale 3-1.
Meanwhile, Central Coast Mariners suffered its second consecutive Hyundai A-League defeat 2-0 against Sydney FC at Allianz Stadium in the New South Wales capital at the weekend.
Kashiwa Reysol currently top Group H of the 2013 AFC Champions League courtesy of their 1-0 victory over China-s Guizhou Renhe in Guiyang on Matchday 1. Brazilian striker Cleo, who is on loan from Guangzhou Evergrande in the Chinese Super League, netted for the Chiba-based Club just before half-time.
Arnold-s Mariners currently occupy equal second place in the section alongside Korea Republic-s Suwon Bluewings after the two teams fought out a 0-0 draw in Gosford on Wednesday 27 February.
Approximately 8,000 fans are expected to venture to Reysol-s boutique Stadium in downtown Kashiwa for the Group H match.
The capacity of the Hitachi Soccer Stadium is 15,349, with steep terraces adorning either end of the ground. Kashiwa-s vociferous, yellow-clad supporter base (see video below) will ensure the atmosphere at the ground on Wednesday is electric.
For fans in Australia, the game will be shown EXCLUSIVELY LIVE on FOX SPORTS 3 & 3HD on Wednesday evening from 9:00pm AEST.
Central Coast Mariners squad to take on Kashiwa Reysol (from): 1. Mathew RYAN, 2. Daniel MCBREEN, 3. Joshua ROSE, 4. Pedj BOJIC, 5. Zachary ANDERSON, 6. Patrick ZWAANSWIJK, 7. John HUTCHINSON (c), 8. Adriano PELLEGRINO, 9. Bernie IBINI, 11. Oliver BOZANIC, 13. Brent GRIFFITHS, 14. Michael MCGLINCHEY, 15. Brad MCDONALD, 16. Trent SAINSBURY, 17. Anthony CACERES, 18. Nick MONTGOMERY, 19. Mitchell DUKE, 20. Justin PASFILED (Gk), 21. Mile STERJOVSKI, 24. Hayden MORTON, 25. Michael NEILL, 29. Nick FITZGERALD, 30. David BRADASEVIC (Gk)
Kashiwa Reysol squad to take on Central Coast Mariners (from): 1. Kazushige KIRIHATA (Gk), 2. Masato FUJITA, 3. Naoya KONDO, 4. Daisuke SAZUKI, 5. Tatsuya MASUSHIMA, 7. Hidekazu OTANI, 8. Masakatsu SAWA, 9. Masato KUDO, 10. Leandro DOMINGUES, 11. CLEO, 14. Kenta KANO, 15. Jorge WAGNER, 16. Koji INADA, 17. Hiroki AKINO, 18. Junya TANAKA, 19. Yu KIMURA, 20. Akimi BARADA, 21. Takanori SUGENO (Gk), 22. Wataru HASHIMOTO, 23. Hirofumi WATANABE, 25. Yusukie KOBAYSHI, 26. Tetsuro OTA, 28. Ryoichi KURISAWA, 29. Hiroyuki TANIGUCHI, 30. Ryosuke YAMANAKA, 31. Kosuke NAKAMURA (Gk)
Visit CCMariners.com.au in the coming days to keep up to date with the team in Japan.
We-ll have pre and post match videos, photos and articles from inside camp, ensuring fans from Killarney Vale to Kashiwa are kept informed ahead of and after AFC Champions League Matchday 2.
Kashiwa Reysol vs. Central Coast Mariners - 2013 AFC Champions League Matchday 2 Wednesday 13 March, 2013 Hitachi Kashiwa Soccer Stadium, Kashiwa Kick-off: 7:00pm (local); 9:00pm (AEST) Twitter: Join the match conversation on Twitter! The official match hash-tag is #KRvCCM Television: The game will be shown EXCLUSIVELY LIVE on FOX SPORTS 3 & 3HD on Wednesday evening from 9:00pm AEST.